Cameroon-born Ahmed Abba, a correspondent for French radio RFI who spent 876 days in prison on ‘fake’ charges of terrorism, was released on Saturday 22 December, Radio France Internationale reported on its website.
Abba was freed after the court reduced his 10-year sentence to 24 months, reports said.
“We are delighted that Ahmed Abba will finally be free, having already spent 876 days in jail too many,” Angela Quintal, of the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) said the day Abba’s 10-year sentence was due to be reduced.
“Abba was a victim of a monumental travesty of justice and should never have been arrested or charged in the first place,” Quintal said, adding that Abba must pick up the pieces of his life and return to his journalism without further fear of reprisal.”
Abba received – in absentia – the CPJ’s 2017 International Press Freedom Award for courageous reporting.
President Paul Biya, one of the continent’s brutal and merciless dictators, has been ruling this Central African nation with iron-fist for more than 30 years. Many observers believe that the ailing dictator has been able to hold on to power all these years thanks to the support of France, the country’s former colony.